A Fourteenth-Century Plague Treatise, Part 2 Winterbloom Farm what is diffuse anoxic brain injury

As we saw in the anoxic brain injury treatment first chapter of this medieval plague treatise, some historical commentators believed the plague was spread via poisonous air. At first blush this seems a precursor to modern germ theory. But keep in mind that classical and medieval authors were ignorant of bacteria and viruses (though they sometimes spoke of airborne “seeds” or semina that spread disease). Nevertheless, they were aware that lingering among the ill could mean getting sick. 1 the text in part 1 warned against eating hot foods or taking baths whenever the plague comes around, since these pleasant activities open the pores to venomous airs. Other treatises warn against exposing the body to southern winds, lest these warm airs dilate the pores and penetrate the heart. 2


In this second chapter, the language of organs and their “cleansing places” ( clensyng place in middle english or locus purgativus in the latin) comes from the classical/medieval theory of the four bodily humors: yellow bile, black bile, phlegm, and blood. The idea was that these fluids are balanced in a healthy person but could become “superfluous” or overabundant, causing sickness. At that point the superfluous humors would need to be purged from the body in order to restore health (and you might be paying a visit to your local leech). 3

Modern historians have largely discredited the theory that hypoxic brain injury recovery time the medieval plague or black death was an outbreak of the bubonic plague, spread by fleas (though you’ll find plenty of hangers-on, including wikipedia). 4 that said, the black death and bubonic plague share the same major symptom, namely large swellings or buboes on the body. The historian robert lerner distinguishes between the kinds of swellings described in medieval sources and those reported in nineteenth-century accounts of bubonic plague victims:

Although [medieval] chroniclers often mention large tumors in the groin [which is characteristic of the bubonic plague], they rarely locate them only there. Much more often they have them appearing in two places, groin and armpits, and sometimes in three places, groin, armpits, and behind the ears, or on the throat or neck. Given that the groin, armpits, and neck are anxiety attack symptoms mayo clinic the major locations of human lymph nodes, it is reasonable to believe that the black death was a lymphatic disease. (210) 5

Chapter 2. The second chapter tells where this sickness comes from and what causes it. Humans have 3 principal parts and members: the heart, the liver, and the brain. Each of these has a cleansing place where it purges superfluities and [thus] cleanses itself. 6 the heart’s cleansing place is located under the arms. The cleansing place of the liver is between the thighs and the body and these holes. 7 but the cleansing place of the brain is below the ears or under the throat.

This evil comes when the pores have been opened due to one of the causes mentioned above [in the first chapter]. The infected [literally “ venemous”] air enters and soon mixes with anoxic brain injury mri a person’s blood, thus running to the heart (that is the neurofeedback anxiety testimonials very ground and root of life and the human nature 8) in order to destroy it and kill the person. The heart naturally flees from whatever is opposed or contrary to it and therefore sends the poison to its cleansing place, where, because it is stopped and cannot escape, 9 it passes to the next principal part — the liver — to destroy it. In the same manner, the liver sends the poison to its cleansing place, where it is then stopped. Because it cannot proceed once more, the poison passes to the third principal part, which is the brain, which puts it in its cleansing place so that it may not advance from there. And thus the poison is moving for a long time before it rests in any place, [for a space of] over 12 hours. Finally, if it is not released via bloodletting within 24 hours, it festers somewhere and sends a man into sickness and produces a swelling in or near one of the 3 cleansing places.

[f. 44v] chapter 2. The secunde chapitre tellith hou this sekenesse coomyth & what is þe cause thereof. In man [are] iij principall p[ar]ties & members: the harte, the lyver, & the brayne & each hath his clensyng hypoxic brain injury recovery place where he may put oute his sup[er]fluytees & clense hym. The harte hath his clensyng place [f. 45r] vndir the armes. The clensyng place of the lyver is betwene the thies & the body & these hooles. But the clensynge place of the brayne is vndir the eares or vndir the throte.

Þan this evill coomyth þ us whan the poris ben opyn for su m cause aforeseide, the air venemous entryth and anon mengith w ith a mannys blode and so renneth to þe harte that is grounde & roote of lyf & mannys kynde for to distroy it and sle the man. The harte kyndely fleeth that is ageyne it & contrar[] to it & puttith the venyme to his clensyng place and by cause that þ at place is stoppid þ at it may not hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy grade 3 oute it passith to þe [f. 45v] next principall p arties that is the lyver for to destroy it and it on the same wise puttith it to his clensyng place and for that is stoppid. Also that it may not oute it passith to the thr id principall p arty that is the brayne and he puttith it to his clensyngplace and yit it may not oute there and thus a long tyme it is moevyng or that it rest in any place xij houres & more. And then at last w it hin xxiiij hours yif it be not passand onto w it h bloodyng it fastenyth [thornton: festres] in sum me place & castith a man in an ague &amp anoxic tank; maketh a bocche in sum[?] of the iij clensyngplaces or nygh them.

• for instance, in the 15th century giovanni of capestrano compared the spread of epidemics in the air to the growth of yeasts (latin fermentum): “it is a rule of doctors that whenever the air in any place begins to be pestilential with the appearance of worms and poxes and measles, which typically precede pestilence, or with the appearance of any pestilential disease […] everyone must move to an air in which nothing of the afore-mentioned appears or appeared in the near past within, at least, six months because of the vestiges of past epidemics, which like yeast [ qui velnut fermentum] infect those who move to that place.” see ottó gecser, “giovanni of capestrano on the plague and the doctors.” franciscan studies 75 (2017): 27-48 (p. 41). Gecser’s translation.

• see, for instance, joseph P. Pickett’s “A translation of the ‘canutus’ plague treastise.” in lister M matheson, ed. Popular and practical science of medieval england. (colleagues press, 1994): 263-282. In particular p. 273: “the south wynde greuyth the heeryng & hurteth the herte, by cause it openeth the poores of man & entreth into the herte[…]”

• thus the italian physician mondino de’liuzzi (ca. 1265-1326) claimed that the uterus’ second job (after reproduction anoxia perinatal) is “purging the whole body of superfluous, undigested blood.” he adds, “this applies to human beings only, because other animals do not suffer from the menstrual flux, since in them superfluities are consumed in [the production of] hide, fur, claws anoxic encephalopathy mri, beaks and feathers and the like, which humans lack.” from his work anathomia mundini. Text taken from faith wallis, ed. Medieval medicine: A reader. (university of toronto press: 2010), p. 236.

• I’m unsure how to translate the reference to holes here — these last 3 words of this sentence are absent in the thornton manuscript (ed. Margaret sinclar ogden, EETS 1938, repr. 1969, p. 52 — see part 1 of this blog post for more info). It’s possible I transcribed something incorrectly from the manuscript, though I’ve given it a second look. The latin reads inter crura et corpus in crurium concauitatibus, or “between the legs and body in the cavities of the legs” – which I’m assuming refers to the inguinal region — home to a number of lymph nodes that could become inflamed by the black death or other diseases.

• the word here is “kynde” – to see its broader senses of nature, body, form, essence, see the definition. In latin, this reads ad cor quod est principium et radix vit[a]e et humanam naturam taliter destruit et occidit — “to the heart, which is the beginning and root of life, and thus destroy and kill human nature.” I take the humanam naturam hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy treatment in india, here the source of the middle english mannys kynde as likely the direct object of the verbs destroy and kill, given the accusative form (whereas principium and radix are nominative). (latin nerds: check my work!)